A's anticipate Hill and Manaea to return soon

Club awaiting answer on Henderson's status

A's anticipate Hill and Manaea to return soon

ANAHEIM -- The A's are moving closer toward getting back two members of their starting rotation, though they're still unsure about the status of another.

Rich Hill (left groin strain) reported no issues after making 35 pitches in a bullpen session Friday at Angel Stadium. The left-hander will make a Minor League rehab start Monday with Class A Advanced Stockton, with the hope that he can return to the A's next week.

"He feels great," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "I think he realizes if he tried to push it much further he probably would have been out for quite a bit longer. So he feels really good going into what will be his rehab assignment and hopefully that will be it and he'll be back pitching for us, because as we saw, he's really stepped up big time for us, especially when [Sonny Gray] was out, performed at a very high level, really the time he was out there, All-Star caliber level."

Hill was Oakland's best starter at the time of his injury, going 8-3 with a 2.25 ERA in 11 starts. He's been on the DL since May 30.

The A's are also hoping to get back lefty Sean Manaea (forearm) next week. Manaea made a rehab start with Stockton on Friday, throwing 64 pitches over 3 2/3 innings and giving up two runs on two hits (one home run), while striking out three against two walks. He's been on the DL since June 14 and is eligible to be activated on Wednesday, when the A's host the Giants. 

Meanwhile, the A's are still waiting for a definitive answer on Henderson Alvarez, who was has been shut down a second time in his rehab from last year's right shoulder surgery. Alvarez has been visiting this week with Dr. James Andrews, who performed the surgery last July.

"The only thing I did hear was all of a sudden he feels really good again," Melvin said. "So I think that Dr. Andrews really wants to take some time and evaluate where he thinks he is, as far as trying to get him back out on the mound again. It's a little bit of a puzzle. Hopefully, we can get him back going again. Who knows what the timetable will be, what we're looking at from him? But I think as far as those things go, being shut down a second time, I'd like to consider it encouraging that he feels good."

Alvarez, 26, reported discomfort in his shoulder during his most recent rehab start with Triple-A last weekend. He has yet to debut with the A's after signing a one-year, $4.25 million deal in the offseason.

Austin Laymance is a reporter for MLB.com based in Los Angeles. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.